Color to Scent – Essential Oil Perfume

I have used essential oils in the past for their topical and healing properties.  I am going to stretch a bit beyond those bounds and develop a perfume blend.  Did you know you can use a color wheel to build a fragrance using essential oils?  Here in this post I will walk you through the way I have developed my latest limited edition summer line “Spring Bouquet” from color to scent.

Color Theory

I’m sure you remember learning about primary and secondary colors in elementary school, red and yellow make orange, blue and red make purple and so on….

As a crafter turned artist I have used a color wheel and color theory to develop the palette of various different projects.  Whether it is card making, scrapbooking or painting, colors are combined so they are pleasing on the eye.  Some of my favorite color combinations are called a mixed complementary color scheme.  That means you select your main color and find accents that are on either side of your main color’s complement.

Split Complement color scheme

Lime Green with the split complement of blue-purple and reddish orange.

As you look at the color wheel above, you will notice that there are roughly 24 different colors, or hues, represented.  As you move the the inner to outer edges of each hue, notice how the color changes.  These are the tints, tones and saturation levels of each hue.

Here are some projects completed using a split complement color scheme with the main color as a shade of green.

Split Complementary Tulip and Iris Painting Split Complement Color Scrapbook Page Split Complementary Floral Boquet

Notice how each of these images are grounded using a green somewhere near the lime color.  The accent colors can be found along the lines drawn on the color wheel above (the basic hue), the difference is the saturation, tint and shade of the hues.

Translating Color to Scent

This is where things can get a bit tricky, and I have relied on more experienced people than myself to develop the ‘fragrance color wheel’.  Mandy Aftel, founder of Aftelier Perfumes has a fragrance wheel that aligns the different essential oil scents with their position on the color wheel.  When I take the arrow I drew on the color wheel above and place it on the Aftelier Perfume wheel you see the essential oils that would make a similar split complementary scheme, from color to scent!

perfume color wheel split complement, color to scent.

The arrow is aligned on the Aftelier Perfume color wheel, highlighting the oils that are the base of my blend.

 

It is difficult to read, but on my color wheel the lime green color highlights my top notes, lime and grapefruit.  These are the first notes that are evident in the fragrance.  They are the introduction to the scent. The next arrow of my color/scent scheme points to the middle note of the fragrance – jasmine.  As you may notice, I am working toward a fruity floral fragrance. The final arrow points toward the base note of my essential oil blend.  I chose sandalwood because of its ability to act as a fixative for the lighter, more fleeting citrus notes.

After the blend was completed I felt I needed something to balance the heavy floral scent of jasmine.  Going back to the fragrance wheel I added in black pepper, an oil that falls right between the sandalwood and jasmine.  When the blend was complete I wound up with a fun, fruity floral perfume that warms into a spicy, woody floral scent with the staying power to last the entire day.

Don’t miss out on this limited edition spring and summer scent “Spring Bouquet“.  It is sure to lift your spirits and turn his head!

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